Rothesay Life buys out MetLife’s U.K. bulk annuity business

Rothesay Life agreed to acquire MetLife's U.K. bulk annuity pension buyout business, MetLife Assurance, confirmed a spokesman for Rothesay.

The deal is expected to close in the second quarter and is subject to regulatory approval from the Prudential Regulatory Authority. The spokesman for the bulk annuity specialist said none of the financial details of the transactions had been disclosed.

MetLife Assurance has £3 billion ($5 billion) of assets under management and has secured the defined benefit pension liability of 20,000 members since its launch in 2007. It provides bulk annuities to clients in the U.K. and Ireland. The deal does not involve MetLife's other businesses in the U.K., which include wealth management and employee benefits, and it does not affect its U.S. pension risk-transfer business.

The deal makes Rothesay Life the largest dedicated provider of defined benefit plan derisking solutions, said Addy Loudiadis, CEO of Rothesay Life, in a news release.

Rothesay Life is on the lookout for similar transactions, “as companies for which this isn't a core business look to free up capital,” the spokesman said in an e-mail. It acquired Paternoster in 2011.

Citigroup's capital markets unit acted as MetLife's financial adviser. The company's legal adviser was CMS Cameron McKenna. Goldman Sachs and Linklaters advised Rothesay Life.